This from the Sunday Times today, June 6.
Fundraiser block after cash pours in for feminist charged with hate crime
A fundraising appeal to pay the legal bills of a feminist charged with a hate crime over alleged homophobic and transphobic social media posts exceeded its target of £10,000 within three hours of launching yesterday.
However, the campaign by Marion Millar was later blocked by GoFundMe …
Marion Millar is not the first to fall foul of the criminalising of ‘transphobia’. On the face of it preposterous, but exemplifying a stepping up of an alliance long in the making – between the useful idiocies of ‘woke’ politics and forces more sinister – misuse of the transphobia charge shows several points of similarity with misuse of the antisemite charge:
- Just as critics of Israel (Jewish critics included) are depicted as antisemitic, so are those who insist sex is binary and biological (trans-women like Deborah Hayton included) depicted as transphobic.
- Just as to be accused of antisemitism is to be guilty of it, notably in the McCarthyite climate of a British Labour Party deeply and overtly hostile to all talk of class, so is it with the transphobia charge. Said Esther Giles on this site:
So the defamation escalates. First you call someone a ‘transphobe’. Next you can call them a ‘known transphobe.’ When they’ve been called a known transphobe often enough, they become a ‘notorious transphobe’. All without saying a single word, and just because the attackers say it and say it again and again.
- Just as defenders of those accused of antisemitism run the risk of guilt by association, so do the defenders of those accused of transphobia. Esther Giles (ibid):
when this happens to you, you find out how people and groups respond to the white-hot flame of the witch-hunt. Some melt away like snowflakes. Some swivel round and stand by the side of the witch-hunters. Some run for shelter, and some stand in the flames by your side (including people you never met before) and become an even more valuable gold.
But back to Marion Millar. This from Scotland’s The Herald, June 3:
Feminist campaigner charged with ‘hate crime’
A LEADING feminist campaigner has been charged with a hate crime for posting allegedly homophobic and transphobic material on social media.
Marion Millar, from Airdrie, was charged under the Malicious Communications Act for tweets posted in 2019 and 2020, and could face two years in jail if convicted.
It is understood one tweet included a picture of a ribbon in the purple, white and green of the suffragette movement.
Ms Millar, who has autistic twin boys and who runs an accountancy business, was bailed to appear to Glasgow Sheriff Court on July 20.
She is a supporter of sex-based rights for women, and opposes simplifying transgender self-identification.
Her critics claim she is a trans-exclusionary radical feminist, or Terf.
After a two-hour interview at Coatbridge police station, she was met by supporters, many wearing T-shirts with the “#WomenWontWheesht” hashtag she promotes.
She tweeted later: “I have been charged, I am absolutely gutted, I can’t describe in words the stress this is causing me” …
That was June 3. Two days later, on June 5, a crowdfund appeal was launched using GoFundMe. As the Sunday Times piece above notes, it had gathered £10,000 in the first three hours. That’s when the crowdfund organisers received the following notification:
Me, I’m a tolerant sort of chap. If you want to go around thinking sex is a “spectrum”, the earth flat or the universe created 6,000 years ago as per Book of Genesis, I’m cool with that. Where I draw the line is on any or all of the following:
- Being told, on no firmer basis than that I find the first of those beliefs no less risible than the second and third, that I’m a lowdown cad of a transphobe.
- Being told that the many feminists horrified by the ramifications of this threat, after decades of fighting for the disentangling of sex from gender, are all TERFs.
- The rising tendency for faceless social media censors – and in this case worse than – to police boundaries of elastic subjectivism to cheers from the witless end of identity politics.
Above all I am fearful of a trend summed up by Scottish1 blogger Gordon Dangerfield:
Of course the Gender Recognition Act will be duly enforced by the Hate Crime Act. Thus arises an intriguing ‘binary’ relationship between extreme individualistic subjectivism and extreme state authoritarianism. Assertion of non-negotiable pseudo-sacrosanct narcissistic power is common to both. Objective law as irreducible sphere of reality is subverted by arbitrary personalism. Might determines right. Autocracy of self-ID is mirrored by autocracy on high.
Isn’t it time the ‘woke’ woke the fuck up to who they’ve been sleeping with?
* * *
- I’m placing a marker on this affair as one where trends more widespread find unique expression in the specifics of Scotland’s alleged erosion of the separation of judicial from executive powers. As with the selective prosecution of Craig Murray, there are Caledonian aspects I’m insufficiently au fait with. What I will say is this: in my limited experience, those who see the sun shining from First Minister Sturgeon’s derriere bring to their political assessments the same superficiality of approach as those who saw it shining from President Obama’s.
Apologies for being a pedant – though please pull me up if I’ve read thiia incorrectly:
My understanding of the quote attributed to Gordon Dangerfield in this piece is that it was one of two comments posted on Gordon’s blog site which were reproduced in the BTL comments on this site’s May 12 post on the (Kangaroo) trial of Craig Murray by one Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh?
If I’ve got this wrong just slap me round the head and tell me to pay more attention.
On a more positive note I understand that Marion Millar successfully raised around £30k (at last count earlier this afternoon) via PayPal.
Correct. It was Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh alerted me, in a comment on my post on the sentencing of Craig Murray, to Mr Dangerfield’s words. (I’d quoted the latter in said post.) For brevity I didn’t credit Fearghas as my route to those words. Nor did I credit you for alerting me – as you have on so many other issues – to Marion Millar’s plight.
Very glad to hear of the fund hitting £30k via another route. Shame on the hypocrites and cowards at GoFundMe and elsewhere.
As for corporate media, as best I can tell, only Murdoch’s Sunday Times and a handful of Scotland’s papers, including The Herald, have so far reported on the prosecution or the fundraising.
We are now on a slippery slope which will lead inevitably to the paralysis of free speech and opinion. Things will get very much worse as the state apparatus and it’s corporate propaganda media begin to think of new ways to assail and deny us all our rights. The more we put up with it, the faster the state can impose it’s heavy boot on the back of our necks. I don’t think I’m being paranoid, but you may think otherwise. I’ve spoken before about E.A Blairs 1984 and the comparison is becoming more apparent on a frightening scale.
You may despise Dr. Bashar’s address to the people but he made some very pertinent observations even if they were incompatible with certain sections of our community.
The Western “democracies” have become decadent and irredeemably corrupt and the citizenry are devolving from being civilised to sinking to the bottom of the swamp.
I apologise if I have given offence, but that is the way I feel and I wish I lived somewhere else, far away from the madness and self destructive panoply of modern western living.
Stay safe and thanks for the article.
Yes. Slippery slope!
As for Bashar al-Assad, he speaks to a Syria – demographically diverse but, like most of the global south, conservative on sex and sexuality – he did not abandon, an outcome the West is on record as desiring long before the Daa’ra protests of 2011 gave a pretext for regime change.
While few of the Western woke would consciously make the equation – ‘Assad and other leaders in the middle east are homophobes and sexists, so it’s OK to inflict untold misery on their peoples’ – I sense precisely such ‘reasoning’ at sub conscious levels. So when bombs are dropped, depleted uranium shells fired, cruise strikes launched and terrorists funded and let off the leash, said woke may not (always!) cheer them on but any protest will be more muted than had those leaders been 24 carat PC.
And while I might disagree with Dr Assad on all the ways in which Western degeneracy shows itself, I cannot fault his assertion that, after decades of consumer-led capitalism at cost of environmental insanity and the suffering of the global south, ours is indeed a degenerate culture. The marriage of expedience Gordon Dangerfield speaks of – the bride postmodern naivete; the groom old style class rule – is but one aspect of this. As such it is to be resisted at every turn.
Two current, related, news items stand out this morning. Both in the sporting arena. Both reeking of hypocrisy and double standards. Both evidence of the process described above not being limited to the self-identitarian “progressive” “left.”
The first being the response from a certain section of the commentariat and their followers to the actions of what is described as the ‘woke mob’ in regard to twitter posts made nearly ten years ago by a cricketer making his England debut.
The second in response to English footballers taking a knee before kick off.
In the first instance, whilst there are valid points made in regard to the total absence of any room for forgiveness, recognition of genuine mistakes, or being young and daft from the purity spiral crowd – let those who are without sin etc – the cliche about people living in glass houses occurs.
Many of those complaining of the behaviour of the “woke mob” in this instance were and are still behaving no differently in terms of approach, process and intent in weoponising accusations of antisemitism for political purposes. Ask Jeremy Corbyn, Mark Wadsworth, Ken Livingstone, Chris Williamson, and many others subject to the the same “woke” approach from the rabid right of the political spectrum across all political parties.
Ditto for generations of trade unionists blacklisted for decades for having the temerity to piss off their betters by highlighting their hypocrisy and corruption. Some were even sent to prison for this offence against the right wing establishment woke. Something which is still happening this very day as some jumped up Parish Guardian with the title of “Lady” will demonstrate in the case of a former British diplomat.
In the second instance the mardy arsed whining throughout all media – corporate and social – from some sections of society about footballers taking the knee in solidarity with each other against largely the same group of whingers who consider they have an automatic right to abuse in racial or sexual/gender terms many of those same footballers either via social media or during the match without any response or challenge is no different to the approach of what is labelled the (progressive/left) “woke mob.”
The point being that the processes at play here are generic and not limited to one end of the political spectrum. The right is just as “woke” as the so called “progressive left.” Indeed, they’ve been ‘at it’ for a lot longer.
Which is why what is described in the quote from Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh/Gordon Dangerfield is key simply because the identity politics which has infected the “progressive left” is grounded in and derived from pure unadulterated “no such thing as society” Thatcherism. An approach based entirely on subjective and selfish individualism which puts subjectively constructed rights above the common good.
An approach which produces the unedifying spectacle of artificially manufactured hierarchies of oppression in which rights are ruthlessly taken and enforced whilst denying the basic social reciprocity of the same rights to others.
In respect of both issues highlighted in this piece – AS and sex/gender – three interrelated and problematic elements can be identified which are selectively applied:
Firstly, there exists an almost pathological point blank refusal to recognise and accept any possibility that anyone within the self-selected/referenced group/gang (including supporters) could or would act in bad faith. In industrial parlance the line is no one in the self-identifying group will ever take advantage of the demanded “rights” by kicking the arse out of it to the detriment of others.
Conversely, when considering anyone not part of the self-identified group/gang the opposite is the case. There exists no room for consideration of good faith positions outside of the group/gang. Anything not totally in line with the manufactured “reality” is by definition bad faith acting by others against the purist position of that subjectively derived reality.
As a result, in this made up subjective reality anyone within the group/gang who deviates a single iota from the approved line – any non-official Zionist (JVL members for example) in the case of AS; those such as Debbie Hayton et al in respect of the sex/gender issue- are cast out and de-legitimised.
This refusal to recognise, never mind accept, the possibility of any adverse outcomes for anyone else as a result of this subjective and purist approach and position has direct and negative real life practical consequences.
The subjective rejection of any possible negative outcomes arising from bad faith actions does not actually, in the objective real world, prevent or make go away varying degrees of abuse which will occur (regardless of how much it is wished otherwise); from mixing, as a matter of normal practice, natal men and women in prisons, rape crisis centers, and women’s refuges through to competitive sport and the administration of drugs as a convenient substitute for robust and sensitive therapies for vulnerable children.
Children who in every other context and circumstance are considered to be too young to be criminally responsible, consume alcohol, buy glue or sharp instruments, vote, enlist in the military, or even in some circumstances cross the road unsupervised.
Ditto in the case generations of real people whose lands, ability to live and lives are stolen on the pretext of any criticism of those consequences being classified as the highest and worst form of racism in this artificially created and manufactured hierarchy of oppression.
Secondly (and related to the above), to paraphrase, there’s a really sharp scythe operating here. In practical, rather than theoretical, terms any society which wishes to function to any degree of efficacy requires reciprocal rights for all.
This “woke” approach – which in its current form exists as a result of people kicking the arse out of a concept – is based on the elevation of subjective feelings above all other considerations. However, this is selectively rather than generically applied as a principle.
As a result what actually occurs is this:
The legitimate feelings of one, self identified, group to perceived problematic issues – physical attack, verbal abuse, offensive behaviour, etc. etc which results in them feeling stressed, triggered, in an unsafe space whilst being very real for that group is no less real for other people who feel equally, and legitimately, threatened by that very group and its actions/reactions.
However, because of the point blank refusal to countenance any possibility that one self-identified group would ever take advantage (kick the arse out of) of any rights – or, as a result of this subjectively applied individualised and therefore Thatcherised reality approach that there can ever exist any conflict of rights (because objective society does not exist only the subjective individual and the group/family) between different interests and people – those same rights to act on those feelings are not afforded to anyone else.
As a consequence, as one example; natal women are being denied the same rights to express their feelings of being under threat from verbal abuse, physical attack, triggered etc etc and act upon them to protect their safety and rights.
Because under this hierarchy of oppression approach they are down the pecking order in the pyramid/queue. Not simply in everyday practice but officially. Those such as Marion Miller et al can be abused and threatened in the most brutal way by the purity spiral “progressive left” “woke mob” both on and off line and no one from the social media platform to the police to the prosecution services institutions to the politicians and media commentariat will raise an eyebrow. to what in another context is actively pursued as the most heinous of hate crimes.
But openly state simple objective facts and realities – from biology through to standing up for natal women’s rights, displaying a set of ribbons, or even using the word “women” when not prefixed with a specific general pronoun – and the institutions of the State will be onto you like a ton of bricks for thoughtcrime at the behest of a self-righteous mob.
And its the same with the AS issue.
Because at the end of the day this is about power. Nothing else.
And it has real life negative consequences.
Being Thatcherite in nature this represents an approach which should be anathema to any political or social based group, organisation or institution which claims to be progressive or of the left. It is divisive and represents an extremely effective divide and rule Class based attack using the disguise of left/progressive labels. It salami slices groups in society which do and should have more in common with each other in the same way as the Experian model does*.
It does this by ultra emphasising subjective based differences to divide what should be united. In this way Class based action is neutralised in favour of an atomised approach of a war of all against all in order to achieve and maintain control against any practical challenge. Which is why it is actively supported and financed by authoritarian State institutions and organisations from the police service and judiciary through to the media – both corporate and much of the “left” (sic) “alternative” – particularly those such as the AWL, who seem to be (unwittingly??) doing a lot of the heavy lifting on behalf of Capitalist class interests.
In terms of waking up this particular bastardised version of the “woke”?
I’m not convinced that rational concepts can be applied in any practical or meaningful way to the terminally irrational. I suspect we are so far down the rabbit hole in this regard and that the only option is to hang on to a sturdy piece of wood and let those who have succumbed to this impractical and unworkable nonsense sink under their own contradictions.
I guess that represents some kind of “accelerationist” position? But, the quicker we can get that over with the sooner we can get back to doing the business.
*Up until a couple or few years back the LP used the Experian Model for its political campaigning. This model divides social groups into something well in excess of 100 categories. Some of which were considered as not worth bothering with by many extreme centerists within the LP in terms of canvassing.
Yes. And Blair was an early sign of that approach’s embrace by a “New” Labour. Today’s Party is virulently hostile to all talk of class: of the gulf between those whose income derives from their ever tightening monopoly ownership of the means of producing wealth, and those obliged to sell their labour power (white collar or blue) on markets our media speak of, in ways gross or subtle, as falling from the sky: as beyond human agency.
Labour – from its inception ambivalent about class, but once distinguishable from other social democrat parties within the West by its organic ties with trade unions – seeks to fill its ideological vacuity through identity politics, pursued as if the real oppression of black people, women, gays, the disabled – and, yes, transgenders – were all products of false ideas; to be corrected by the carrot and stick of education, and of “hate crime” legislation sure to come in handy when, as those of us who study economic realities in the context of an imperialised world see as inevitable, class rule even in the West will be obliged to adopt more authoritarian forms. Such legislation will be tested in arenas of least resistance. As I said months ago, in a footnote to a post on pandemic:
To speak of the oppressions of identity as inevitable products, direct or tangential, of class rule is to draw the wrath of the Keir Starmers of this world, whose name is legion. Take the perception, common in the liberal intelligentsia – though some have the decency to be embarrassed about it – that racism is rooted in an uneducated mind. Not, mark you, in the historic need to legitimate colonial subjugation, grand larceny, slave trade, “settling” of North America and the Antipodes and much besides!
And the plunder of the global south continues in new forms as well as old. As blogger Caitlin Johnstone recently put it:
But back to the trans issue. I say, as I’m sure you do, that ‘men identifying as women’ have an inalienable right – which, pace Pastor Niemöller, we deny at our peril – to protection from violent attack, but no such ‘right’ to enter cis-women’s changing rooms, refuges or prisons; nor to compete in cis-women’s sporting events.
(I see it as a sign of postmodern lunacy that we even need the term, ‘cis-women’.)
Nor to be protected from having their feelings hurt by we who say, on the basis of some pretty hard science, that sex is binary and biological. But whatever the intrinsic merits or otherwise of the belief, by no means held by all trans-women, that sex is a spectrum – and being a woman a matter of “feeling” – the rapid rise to prominence of this issue should sound alarm bells for a number of reasons:
Its speed. It took decades for black, feminist, gay and (social model) disability lobbies to be heard. Yet this one – appearing virtually from nowhere, and on the face of it more controversial, even at basic levels of common sense, than those earlier movements – has gained legal protections in eyebow-raisingly short order.
Its subversion – as Marion Millar, Maya Forstater, the victims of Karen White, and the Vancouver Women’s Refuge denied funding (and closing as a result) for refusing to admit trans-women have learned to their cost – to undo decades of feminist gains, most of them aspects of the hard won separation of sex from gender.
The sinister alliance, called out in my post and such comments as yours, of ‘woke’ politics with rising authoritarianism.
Dylan succinctly nailed this divide and rule strategy in the lyrics of ‘Only a pawn in their game.’
That game, as you imply, has moved on a pace since the Civil Rights Movements of the sixties. And the way it is being played out is instructive. Inasmuch as that having set up the self labelling “progressive” end of the political spectrum by injecting into it this post modernist Thatcherite contagion (a strategy which goes back to at least the time of the publication of ‘A Giants Strength’) to undermine Class based ideology and thus any effective practical opposition it is the political right who are now moving to the stage of presenting themselves to everyone else as the last bulwark against mob rule.
“an extremely effective divide and rule Class based attack using the disguise of left/progressive labels.”
Has a working group sat around somewhere at some time and devised this strategy?
The worst (and possibly most calculated) aspect of the witch hunt phenomena is that it encourages a vituperative either/or situation in which the Right appear as “the voice of reason” because the Left have come to be identified with this fanatical and hypocritically intolerant woke attitude.
I had first hand experience the other day George. Walking my dogs on the local recce, a fellow dog walker – smashing bloke, forty-something, unemployed and big fan of Boris – commented to precisely that effect.
It did get a tad more complex though. My dog walking pal, noting JK Rowling’s screeds of hate mail from the vitriolic end of trans-activism, described her as a “roaring leftie”. But this was very much in the spirit of EVEN a ‘roaring leftie’ like her thinks the sex-as-a-spectrum thing has gone TOO FAR …
(Which in his mind still places denial of sex as biological and binary as a left view.)
This man, a classic working class tory – and as I said – a thoroughly decent bloke – has his world views not so much constrained by the Overton Window as by one small pane of it. From this perspective, JKR will indeed seem a ‘roaring leftie’.
There was a recent matter – and it’s one of those infuriating cases where I honestly can’t recall any details! – when there were comments from “regular folks” over some recent “woke” issue and the “woke warriors” were appalled to find that not one of those commenters gave a shit! They (i.e. the “offending” commenters) were speaking from the perspective of (dare I say it?) “common sense”, by which I mean that, for them, the issue of transgenderism or whatever had no relevance whatsoever. The media whip up the usual pseudo-issue and expect everyone to rally round, without the media people realising that they live in a peculiar world – and possibly constitute a peculiar class – whose concerns are irrelevant to the vast majority.
Your talk of meeting the “Tory neighbour” sums up an experience I have every day. I don’t get nearly so worked up about it as I used to. I have work colleagues who rant at “the woke Left” and “the BBC”. Ironically, I agree with most of what they say but I know it would be pointless to pick them up on their attitude towards this “Left” they seem to imagine. Cf. Zappa’s “People will only agree with you if they already agree with you!”.
Yet, as has been noted the same either/or, with us or against us gang approach and process is not limited to the gender/sex issue.
The conflict over competing definitions, exclusive focus on narratives, and even othering of members of the same community who disagree as ‘heretics’ is neither new nor a feature of the ‘woke’ ‘left.’
What happens to those such as Debbie Hayton is exactly the same as what happens to members of JVL and other members of the Jewish Community. Ditto with GC voices and those who critique Israel. The same processes are operating, and not just within and from the “left.”
The right have been practicing this process for just as long as the left. The gentleman with the dog is engaged in exactly the same process when ‘othering’ those who he considers do not operate to his own subjective based definitions of how the world should be.
For definitive clarification. The following words (quoted above) were my mine alone. They were a comment I made to Gordon Dangerfield’s blog —
Thanks for this useful clarification Fearghad. I for one had taken your words to be GD’s.
For what it’s worth, I posted this slight variation of the text….
“Gender Recognition Act enforced by Hate Crime Act. Binary bond between extreme individualistic subjectivism and extreme state authoritarianism. Autocracy of self-ID mirrored by autocracy on high. Assertion of non-negotiable narcissistic power common to both. Objective law subverted by arbitrary personalism. Might determining right. And, as ever down through the miserable and execrable history of despotism, a willingness to sacrifice millions in obsessive pursuit of some delusive ‘higher cause’.”
…on Iain Lawsons ‘YOURS FOR SCOTLAND’ blog, as a comment to his article entitled ‘THE FASCIST STATE’ (24 May 21):
Worth watching is the following youtube featured by Iain Lawson on YOURS FOR SCOTLAND a few days ago (10 July 21). It “tells it how it is” about Nicola Sturgeon’s internal coup of the SNP —
‘PETER YOUNG INTERVIEWS DENISE FINDLAY OF SCOTTISH FREE MEDIA’:
The original pristine form of my quoted comment can be found on Gordon Dangerfield’s ‘LETTER TO A FRIEND’ (May 9) article here:
The deep influence distilled into my quoted comment is that of the late Dutch Christian philosopher Herman Dooyeweerd (1894-1977), whose thought I have been studying for many decades. Dooyeweerd was professor of the philosophy of law at the Free University of Amsterdam. He lived through the German occupation of the Netherlands:
‘We have witnessed the unspeakably bloody and reactionary regime of nazism, the degenerate spiritual offspring of modern historicism. Totalitarian “racial” [volkse] ideals, inspired by the myth of “blood and soil,” reverted western culture to the dark night of the pagan nature religions. Moreover, these totalitarian ideals were backed by the military power of a mighty modern state. […] Science and art, child rearing and education, industry and technology, labour organizations and philanthropy – all were made subservient. […] Following the example of the mathematical and natural sciences, earlier humanistic theory had always searched for the universally valid laws that control reality. It constructed an “eternal order of natural law” out of the “rational nature of humankind.” This order was totally independent of historical development, and was valid for every nation at all times and in all places. […] But as a result of the polarity of its religious [ie ultimate] ground-motive, humanism veered to the other extreme after the French Revolution. Rationalistic humanism (in its view of mathematics and modern natural science) turned into irrationalistic humanism, which rejected all universally valid laws and order. It elevated individual potential to the status of law. […] When the Historical School attempted to understand the entire culture, language, art, jurisprudence, and the economic and social orders in terms of the historical development of an individual national spirit, it elevated the national character to the status of the origin of all order. […] Historicism robs us of our belief in abiding standards […] If everything is in historical flux and if the stability of principles is a figment of the imagination, then why prefer an ideology of human rights to the ideals of a strong race and its bond to the German soil?’ (Herman Dooyeweerd, ‘Roots of Western Culture: Pagan, Secular, and Christian Options’, Paideia Press, 2012, pp 52, 63, 74, 87)
The above extract is posted on my own general (scrapbook) blog here:
I also have a more Dooyeweerd-focussed blog here:
I myself am a retired art teacher and sometime Scottish Gaelic poet. Anyone who can read Irish, though, is directed to my recently-posted prose intellectual-bio (sort of) in that language here:
What are the grounds we should use to assign each of the six most common karyotypes of biological sex in human beings (that do not result in death to the fetus) to one of the binary categories of male or female?
X – Roughly 1 in 2,000 to 1 in 5,000 people (Turner’s )
XX – Most common form of female
XXY – Roughly 1 in 500 to 1 in 1,000 people (Klinefelter)
XY – Most common form of male
XYY – Roughly 1 out of 1,000 people
XXXY – Roughly 1 in 18,000 to 1 in 50,000 births